Less than a week after touting his company’s accomplishments at Heli-Expo 2013, Eurocopter CEO Dr. Lutz Bertling, 50, has resigned effective April 30, parent company EADS announced this morning. He joined Eurocopter in 2003 and became CEO in 2006. During his tenure, Eurocopter’s sales nearly doubled to $8.3 billion.
News and issues regarding all manner of civil and military rotorcraft and their powerplants, including helicopters, tiltrotors and unmanned air vehicles.
Bell Helicopter took in orders for 50 helicopters last week at Heli-Expo in Las Vegas. According to the company, American Medical Group Holdings placed an order for 30 helicopters at the show, while orders for 20 more came from international customers in Latin America, Europe and Asia. “We set out aggressive customer interaction and sales goals for Heli-Expo,” Bell Helicopter president and CEO John Garrison said. “It has been an exciting and intense few days spending time with hundreds of our best customers.”
Heli-Expo closed this afternoon with record numbers of attendees, exhibit space and exhibitors, according to show organizer Helicopter Association International. There were 736 exhibitors, occupying nearly one million square feet at the Las Vegas Convention Center, for the three-day helicopter show. Heli-Expo 2013 also saw 20,105 attendees walk through the doors, marking the sixth consecutive year of growth in attendance.
Sensor Technology (Booth No. C2432) announced upgrades to the HeliNav LoadMaster wireless load monitoring system for helicopter-mounted cargo hooks at Heli-Expo ’13. The system checks the actual weight of an under-slung load 10 times every second and displays that information on a cockpit-mounted display. The data may also be stored in the system for downloading post-flight.
An aviation maintenance technician’s self-portrait of his solitary work one evening on the swashplate friction of a large-cabin helicopter was recently awarded top honors in the first-ever photo contest in Rotor magazine, the official publication of Helicopter Association International (HAI).
Pablo Linares of Fort Worth, Texas, used a small digital camera mounted on a tripod to capture his work under the lights. In accepting the grand prize of $500, Linares stated the photo demonstrated that, “Behind a great aviation department, there is always a great maintenance crew.”
Erickson Air-Crane has executed a binding term sheet to acquire the Air Amazonia aerial services business from Brazilian oil and gas exploration and production firm HRT Partcipacoes em Petroleo. The move supersedes a non-binding letter of intent Erickson submitted in September 2012.
American Helicopter Society International (AHS International, Booth No. N6304) is marking its 70th anniversary here at Heli-Expo. With 6,100 members from 44 countries, AHS International is dedicated to finding technical solutions for vertical lift, including solving the challenge of human-powered vertical flight. AHS International is offering a $250,000 prize, funded by Sikorsky Aircraft (founded by one of the organization’s charter members, Igor Sikorsky) to the designer(s) of a helicopter that can hover for at least one minute at least 9.84 feet over a 32.8-foot-sided square.
Vector Financial Services Ireland announced at Heli-Expo ’13 availability of a fleet of customized Super Puma AS332Ls, including new leasing and hourly support options, aimed at utility operators in the European Union, UN and NATO countries.
“Our lease program gives customers the ability to operate a Super Puma AS332L helicopter…without the large capital investment associated with outright purchase of either a second-hand aircraft or the associated typical aircraft financial lease type obligations,” said Vector UK managing director Michael Tyrell.
Heli-Expo 2013 has another day of deal-making to go, but as of yesterday afternoon manufacturers report they’ve already racked up firm orders, options and letters of intent (LOI) totaling at least 226 helicopters. A breakdown of the action appears on page 21.
The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) held a meeting yesterday at Heli-Expo to share its experience with the government/industry working group designed to rewrite FAR Part 23 certification rules for fixed-wing aircraft and encourage the helicopter industry to apply the model for possible revision of Parts 27 and 29 helicopter certification standards.